Hailing from Brooklyn, DJ, producer and label head Xiorro is one of the brightest stars emitting from an invigorated American techno scene. As co-founder of ALKHEMY, a collective whose genesis is dedicated to spreading diversity in techno and giving space for the marginalised, people of color and women to play, the group also hosts their infamous Black Hole parties which have helped redefine the landscape of New York’s underground scene.
With his Puerto Rican heritage and namesake taking reference from the African revolutionary Marcus Xiorro, he now finds himself an American abroad after impressing with debut sets at Tresor’s New Faces and Berlin party Staub in 2019, which a single season later led him to becoming Griessmuehle’s first international resident DJ.
Touted by DJ Mag as one to watch, and landing in Magnetic Magazine’s 15 Best Techno Tracks of June 2020, his DJ sets and live recordings have made it over to Boiler Room, United We Stream and Beatport, as well as the DSNT, Lobster Theremin and Monasterio Moscow Podcasts. Xiorro’s DJ style and sound is inherently found in rave, with all roots leading to a self-released mix he emerged with in 2018 called ‘techno used to be a tool used to abolish a form of slavery, now it’s just gentrified’. Something Xiorro is here to change.
Booked for headlining sets in his home-city’s Basement club to gigs further afield at Jaded in London, Copenhagen’s Ved Siden Af, Tresor West and Basis in Utrecht, Xiorro continues to co-host nights with the likes of Discwoman and ARTS at both sides of the Atlantic.
How are you?
What have you been getting up to recently?
I’ve been taking full advantage of this “time off” and been focusing on my personal life, sharpening my artistic sword and as of late, starting to get ready for the return of the dance floor. I’ve been working on some fun projects, which I think showcase my creativity stepping up to the next level. I’m quite satisfied with the quality of work that’s been coming out of my finger tips these days.
What’s the first thing you’ll do post lockdown?
I haven’t seen my family in just about two years due to my schedule and then the pandemic, so the first thing I’ll be doing post lock down is taking a trip home to give them all hugs.
What do you do when you’re bored?
When I’m bored, I jump into the studio and start making music. Time is irrelevant when I turn on my machines. I’ve recently read somewhere that boredom sparks creativity and I think that my upcoming tracks can confirm that.
Who’s the greatest DJ of all time?!
I’m just gonna go with Jeff Mills on this one!
If you weren’t a DJ, what would you be?
I’ve always managed to creatively express myself through many different art forms, so if I weren’t a DJ, I would be an illustrator or a video editor.
Mood Wax – What do you listen to?
When I’m happy I listen to:
I’m Puerto Rican and music is huge in my family, so I grew up listening to classic genres like Salsa, Merengue, Bachata and of course, the more recently born genre for “the kids”, Reggaeton. Reggaeton puts me in a happy place because it reminds me of all of the great memories and feelings of my family’s parties back when I was a child and parties as a teen with my friends. This was honestly a hard one, but I’ll go with this gem. Jowell Y Randy – Posición 4:
When I’m sad:
I’m genuinely pretty happy all of the time, but I’ll say Usher’s track, Let it Burn (2004), was a must-have on your playlist if you’d just gotten your heart broken:
When I’m relaxing:
This track just hits the soul right. Scan 7 has managed to release driving tracks with meaning and purpose that can smoothly transition from the dance floor to your living room over the last quarter of a century. You can’t spell Detroit without Scan 7. Scan 7 – Peace Makers:
When I’m in the car:
This on is a little tough being that I currently live in New York and we don’t drive, however, this is a track that my homies and me would blast in the car when I was in high school back home in Boston and on our way to a party. I think it still bangs actually. Drake Ft. Nicki Minaj – Up All Night:
When I’m exercising:
DJ Rush definitely lives up to the name. This track gets me going on the treadmill every single time. A serious banger. DJ Rush & Robert Natus – Sordid:
When I’m cooking:
I love to throw this on when I’m cooking because it gets my hips sensually swinging around the stove, which I think adds to the flavour. Arcangel x Myke Towers – Satisfaccíon:
When I’m pre-drinking:
How could one go wrong with some DJ Skull pre-the rave? DJ Skull – Native Track:
When I’m at an afters:
As co-founder and resident of The Black Hole, Brooklyn’s premiere hard/fast techno rave, we’ve re-interpreted the meaning of ‘afters’ in Brooklyn. Whereas some people view that side of the party as the comedown and throw on sleep vibes, we kick it up a notch and take it into full drive at 8am, anyone who’s had the pleasure to attend any of our raves can confirm >:) Jerome Baker – It Comes From Within: